October 25, 2014

Community Portrait

Tallahassee - A Community Portrait

An In-Depth Look at Florida's Capital

Charlotte Crane | 10/1/2010

Natural Resources

Leon County has 1,300 acres of open space, forest and woodlands between the Miccosukee Canopy Road Greenway and J.R. Alford Greenway. In 2007, the city received the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials’ Environmental and Conservation Award for its exceptional effort to reclaim, restore, preserve, acquire or develop unique and natural areas.

» Wakulla Springs — One of the world’s largest freshwater springs is 15 miles south of Tallahassee in a state park.

» Maclay Gardens — The 1920s-era gardens are part of a 1,000-acre state park a few miles from downtown.

Taxes

Leon County ranks 31st among Florida’s 67 counties in taxes levied per capita.

Government

County and city governments have collaborated during the recession in seeking to stimulate the area’s economy. The county waived permit fees for the extension of environmental management permits and partnered with the city in helping to finance a downtown mixed-use retail and office building called Gateway Tallahassee. This year, the county created a countywide energy improvement district to help residents finance the weatherization of their homes and businesses and help create “green” jobs — the first such effort by a Florida county.

Crime

Crime fell between 2008-09 in Leon County. The county ranks 11th among Florida counties in crimes per 100,000 population, according to FDLE statistics.

Schools

The Leon County district is an “A”-rated district, with 33,000 students. In addition to traditional high schools, the district also offers a non-traditional magnet high school, Sail. Also, Lively Technical Center offers a broad range of career-oriented programs.

Health

In measures of health in the county in which trends are identifiable, positive trends far outnumber the negative, including positive trends in coronary, lung cancer, breast cancer and stroke-related death rates. The county is among the “least favorable” in Florida in the incidence of HIV, gonorrhea and Chlamydia. The incidence of low birth-weight births is also high, but trends are positive in births to teens, premature births and the neonatal death rate.

Cost of Living

The cost of living is below the national average in Leon County, with an overall index rating of 94 (with 100 being average).

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